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Old 09-02-07, 06:41 AM   #1
jp173
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Revenge of the Clipless Pedals

After riding with clipless pedals all summer, my left leg has been in trouble. I've had a constant bout of cramping in the calf muscle.

Yes -- I had my fit checked, etc., etc.

I finally got rid of the clipless pedals and went back to flat pedals at the beginning of August and my legs were happy. But I let my LBS talk me into trying them one more time with different shoes and different pedals.

This time my calf muscle didn't just cramp -- it fully sprained. I can't put any weight on it, I can't bend my leg. I'm on crutches and doing PT three times a day. Doc figures I'll be on the crutches for about a week.

Never again.
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Old 09-02-07, 07:03 AM   #2
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How much float do the clipless pedals have?
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Old 09-02-07, 07:08 AM   #3
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You do unclip when you stop...don't you?
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Old 09-02-07, 07:09 AM   #4
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Seems pretty odd to me. A float issue will usually show up in your knees rather than your calf. Your cleats may have needed to be adjusted. The placement of the cleats will determine how much of the power comes from you calf or thighs when pedaling. Maybe they were too far forward.
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Old 09-02-07, 07:45 AM   #5
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Supposedly the old clipless were adjusted for maximum float.

I've had them fitted at three different LBSs -- same reaction from the calf. Once I got rid of the clipless pedals I noticed a definite improvement in the calf.

These were all new -- new shoes, new clips, new pedals. Supposedly fitted by an expert -- and someone who had worked on the previous pedals so knew my history.

Knees are quite happy. It's the calf that's giving me trouble.
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Old 09-02-07, 08:35 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jp173 View Post
Supposedly the old clipless were adjusted for maximum float.

I've had them fitted at three different LBSs -- same reaction from the calf. Once I got rid of the clipless pedals I noticed a definite improvement in the calf.

These were all new -- new shoes, new clips, new pedals. Supposedly fitted by an expert -- and someone who had worked on the previous pedals so knew my history.

Knees are quite happy. It's the calf that's giving me trouble.
I know every one is different but I use clipless pedals and I do have the occasional Calf problem. Mainly cramps but in the Gym once and on the treadmill. I do not run due to a knee injury but I decided to up the walking pace and up the hill before I was warmed up. Couldn't go to the gym for a month after that.

And I reckon that my calf muscles are the strongest part of my legs.
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Old 09-02-07, 08:47 AM   #7
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This is just a guess. I am thinking that you ride mainly with your pedal axel back toward the heel of your foot more than the clipless pedals would allow. This would mean that your calf muscles don't have to do as much work as when you ride with the clipless pedals. I know when I first started riding that my calf muscles were weak and I would have to move my foot forward so that the pedal axel was under my arch to give the calf muscles a rest from time to time.

If this is the case you could probably strengthen the muscles by doing toe lifts but since you don't plan on trying the clipless pedals anymore why bother.
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Old 09-02-07, 08:49 AM   #8
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Wonder what kind of clipless you are using? Some have a lot more float than others.
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Old 09-02-07, 09:56 AM   #9
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I just changed to different shoes and Shimano spd M 424s and my knee pain is finally gone. I think the bigger platform of the different pedals and the stiffer shoes did the trick for me. I wish you a short recovery and I know what your putting up with, good luck.
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Old 09-02-07, 06:59 PM   #10
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